Trauma can mean anything that causes us stress so overwhelming that our physical response to it is to ‘freeze’ feeling unable to successfully overcome it. This ‘frozen’ material can often be stored in childhood and then triggered by a new stress like a bereavement, a break-up, a car accident or a redundancy.
At Khiron Clinics we recognize that an unfinished biological response to a previously stressful, or threatening, incident leaves a residual disturbance in the body, specifically in the sympathetic nervous system. The body fails to reset and does not return to a state of balance. The resulting dis-regulation causes the body to be over-responsive to the next threat, and over time this can build into a total failure of the biology to metabolize threat and therefore generating a metabolic imbalance impacting the body physiology as a whole.
PTSD stands for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Over the years it has had many other names, including “shell shock” after World War I and “combat fatigue” after World War II. However, PTSD doesn’t just occur in war veterans. It is a psychiatric disorder that can happen to anyone of any nationality, culture, age or ethnicity. Anyone who has experienced or been witness to a traumatic event, it can even affect those who have been indirectly exposed to something traumatic. For example, PTSD can occur in a family member learning of the violent death of someone else in the family.
When someone is suffering with PTSD, they may have intense horrifying thoughts and feelings that relate to their experiences or trauma well after the event is over. One may have flashbacks or nightmares, feel depressed, extremely angry or scared and may have begun to feel disconnected from those around. People may find themselves actively avoiding any situation or person that reminds them of the traumatic event and they may have strong negative responses to innocuous things like a touch or a particular noise.
People with PTSD can feel as though they are losing their way in the world. Their bodies continue to live in an internal environment of the trauma. We are all biologically and neurologically programmed to deal with emergencies, but PTSD causes frozen memory to be stored at a sensory level, in the body.
At Khiron Clinics we look at symptoms as memories. Procedural memories which have impacted and affected the psycho-neuro-endocrino-immunology system which generated an inherent imbalance producing maladaptive behaviors and manifestations.
PTSD can be caused by any experience perceived as overwhelmingly stressful or traumatic which may include:
Some of the very best trauma treatment specialists and PTSD therapists available in the UK are represented in the clinical team at Khiron House, and they are supported in their work by leading national and international figures in the field.
Our treatment for PTSD is inspired by the highly successful treatment modalities recently developed in America. Some of the main modalities we use at Khiron Clinics, Somatic Experiencing and Sensorimotor Psychotherapy, were initially formulated to treat PTSD effectively.
Somatic Experiencing facilitates the completion of self-protective motor responses and the release of thwarted survival energy bound in the body, thus addressing the root cause of trauma symptoms. The approach is to gently guide clients to develop increasing tolerance for difficult body sensations, suppressed emotions and defensive responses.
Sensorimotor Psychotherapy unities the top down (cognitive) and body up (somatic) approaches to treat trauma. Traditional psychotherapy lacks the techniques that work directly with the physiological elements of trauma, even though trauma profoundly affects the body and many symptoms of trauma are somatically based.
It has been found that unassimilated somatic responses evoked in trauma, involving both arousal and defensive responses, are shown to contribute to many PTSD symptoms and be critical elements in the use of Sensorimotor Psychotherapy. Therefore, Sensorimotor Psychotherapy directly treats the effects of trauma on the body, which in turn facilitates emotional and cognitive processing.
As well as Somatic Experiencing and Sensorimotor Psychotherapy, each client’s individualized treatment plan may also include EMDR, Internal Family Systems, Lifespan Integration and BSP (Brainspotting), Bodynamic Somatic Developments Psychology all of which are body referencing therapies that are redefining therapeutic and health outcomes. Inevitably a lot of emphasis is given to different aspects of dissociation, the clinical team and the whole staff is trained to work and support dissociative, personality and identity disorders.
Also woven throughout our program in group and individual sessions are mindfulness, meditation, breathing techniques, yoga and tai chi, which have been proven to reduce symptoms and stabilize dysregulated systems.
A fundamental part of the treatment programme is the sense of belonging the community always aims to offer by delivering trauma informed care alongside emphasizing emotional, physical and relational safety. Supporting and stimulating the clients Social Engagements Systems by restoring the sense of self and developing healthy relations.
The professional PTSD therapists we work with have vast clinical knowledge in the causes, symptoms and treatment of PTSD. We ensure that all of our staff are fully informed of the most up-to-date research and that our practice remains in keeping with the International Society for the Study of Trauma (ISSTD) guidelines (2011) for the treatment of trauma and we work with its three phase model of:
If you, or someone close to you is suffering with PTSD or have symptoms you feel may be related to PTSD, that are overwhelming and debilitating, it is vital that you seek professional help and support. People attempting to cope with unresolved emotional and psychological trauma will often resort to self-medicating with drugs, alcohol or other substances or behaviors in an attempt to cope with their symptoms. They may be prone to self-harm, eg. eating disorders, sex and love addictions, compulsive spending or gambling, and/or they may be experiencing relationship problems and outbursts of anger, overwhelming fear or chronic anxiety. Without treatment it can be very difficult to recover from the effects of unresolved trauma and its lasting impact in the body.
Our team at Khiron Clinics can help you alleviate your symptoms, assess the underlying causes and help you manage triggers in order support recovery. The Clinical team and staff are committed to providing the best Trauma Informed PTSD treatment and support.
We understand that many of you will have been going around in circles trying various treatments and seeing many professionals to try to get help with your symptoms. At Khiron, we are here to stop that merry-go-round of treatment. We believe that by working intensely with you on all your underlying issues, we can help you recover from PTSD.
We work with members of respected organisations to deliver our services